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Football Manager 2019


tiger_rick
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Anyone buying this year's edition? I've only bought the last couple on mobile because I just don't find the time to play but I've gone and watched a load of their videos on Twitch and YT and I've got giddy about it. I'm definitely going to get it and give it another go.

I know I'll moan in a month or two that it's a full time job just to set up your training schedule and you can't complete a season in a weekend like you could on CM01/02 but they've got my money anyway! In fairness, if I was 20 years younger, I'd have creamed my pants at the thought of the level of detail they've put into the new training setup and the additions to tactics. I'd genuinely have spent an entire weekend setting it up if it was still 1998, complete with a notebook or a load of post it notes set up around my bedroom like it was Mourinho's office!

I've added a piece below that I wrote for a fanzine. Just some of my memories of football games in general, with Championship/Football Manager being my favourite. Sorry it's a bit dumbed down in places, but you've got to know your audience!

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A couple of months after the football season starts now signals the release of new versions of football gaming’s biggest franchises – FIFA Soccer and Football Manager. I can’t get excited for the games these days. For me, somewhere along the way they lost the fun. I respect the work that goes into them but FIFA became too serious in trying to kill the market share of rival Pro-Evolution Soccer (PES) while getting through a season of Football Manager is practically a full-time job.

I love the 90s. A decade when video games evolved from beeps and pixels to animations and soundtracks. When music and TV exploded. When some people bought this new thing called the internet. When mobile phones shrunk. And when Cadbury still made the Spira. I love the Spira.

But most of all, I loved the football. Even though Hull City made it a personal mission to end the 1990s as the worst professional team in the country – and only just failed. Football in the 90s was ace. Back then my life was watching football, playing football and playing football games.

I own a bundle of consoles now that I don’t play but it was different then. I started the decade with a Spectrum 128k, sticking mostly to football management sims because other games looked crap and played worse. Match (Of The) Day was a side on game that played in slow motion with the highlight being the MOTD theme playing in a serious of blibs and blobs to signal the start of each game.

Dino Dini’s kick off, while rough around the edges, started the revolution. Games that sold thousands of copies were still made by one bloke in his bedroom. Sometimes two. That would change though and the arrival consoles such as the NES or Sega Master System and their 8-bit “power” were part of the vehicle for change.

I upgraded to an Amiga 512. It’s still the greatest bit of kit ever invented. The colour, pace and, erm, realism of games like Kick Off 2 and Sensible Soccer made gaming as fun as it could ever be. Both were top down games and took some mastering. “Sensi” was bit easier so I preferred that one. But both were a million miles from the offering available a couple of years earlier and much better than the efforts on consoles to that point. I can’t even recall the name of the strange game on NES were you played as if standing behind the players.

Unlike these days gaming was still socialising because you had to sit in the same room to play games against your mates. None of this yelling at strangers through a headset and praying you’re not being groomed! My kids spend hours watching other people play games on YouTube. Back then if you watched your mate for more than a minute you’d put him off so it was your turn.

In late 1993 the first FIFA game was launched. A strange game played as if watching football from high above the corner flag. But it looked great and improved as the decade went on, peaking for me with the brilliant Road to the World Cup version in 1997 that had an insanely fun indoor 5-aside mode. In 1994, International Superstar Soccer (ISS) – the fore-runner to PES – came along and was even better than FIFA. It lacked the licencing we see today so you’d have players called “Aaron Shearer” or “Paul Giscoin” running around but it looked good and played like an arcade game.

FIFA and ISS took games to a whole new level and continued to do so on the brilliant PlayStation and Nintendo 64 consoles that sold millions of units from launch in 1995/96. Sadly, the success of those “franchises” killed the variety in the industry and fun games like Striker, Actua Soccer and This Is Football came and went leaving a market place like the one we have now which has slowly eroded the joy in football gaming.

The biggest franchise though might just be football manager. It’s practically part of the industry now with its scouting network far in advance of what most clubs can muster and its stats sought after by TV sports channels. In the early 90s though, it launched as Championship Manager and it was a revelation. It looked better than its predecessors and had infinite playability. You could play a season in a couple of evenings. In the school holidays, you’d get through two in a day. Players you’d never heard of would become legends in your mind. I’ll never get over the disappointment of the real “Nii Lamptey” turning up in the Premier League and being pretty useless for Aston Villa and Coventry City.

Championship Manager progressed with technology, introduced more and more scenarios from the real world and bigger databases of players and leagues – peaking with the brilliant Champ Man 2001/02 on the PC. The split between SI Games and Eidos followed a couple of years later and what we now know as Football Manager launched. Sadly, the more “realistic” the game has got, the less I’ve wanted to play.

That doesn’t dull the memories though. But it is a shame we couldn’t freeze time in about 1997 when football gaming was near-perfect. When choice was ripe, colours were vibrant, gaming was social and, in my case, anything that made you forget how terrible your real team were was a thing of beauty!

Edited by tiger_rick
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Championship/Football Manager used to be my vice. I sank hours upon hours into it them years ago, but despite buying every release since about 1996(and a few before that on the Amiga), I just can't seem to get into it anymore. On '18, the longest I have got into a "career" is 3 seasons. Can see me buying '19, but I'm not holding my breath that I'll be able to get into it anymore than I did '18...

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2 hours ago, tiger_rick said:

Anyone buying this year's edition?

Either you're a year behind, or the thread should be called Football Manager 2019 surely? 🤔

I haven't played a full version for a good few years, I might give this a go now. I'm probably more football-obsessed and geeky than ever. How do the recent versions compare to those from several years ago? I have absolutely no interest in watching a sim match, by the way. It's ultra-fast text or GTFO- then remembering to pause it after 60-70 minutes to make all three subs like the lazy fuck that I am.

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Similar to you guys, I haven't played properly on the computer in years. Just too much time and work go into aspects that aren't particularly appealing to me, getting through a season takes years seemingly. I've been sticking to the mobile version which I'm finding is just as fun if you aren't arsed about going into and tweaking every minute detail like I am. Manages to find a decent balance between giving you enough control over your team without it coming across suffocating. I'd love to crack out some of the older games with modern updates, be a lot more accessible and wouldn't be a bastard to run on this laptop.

Inspired me to start a new game on 2018 this has. 

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I still play CM01/02 on the original database. It's a godsend when you're busy with work and family as just an hour or two can get a chunk of a season finished.

Saying that, I did look at FM19 recently and I might actually buy one of that series for the first time since 2009. Tempted to pick up 16 or 17 first though just to see if I can get in to that style.

 

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I purchased the last couple of games and I thought they were a massive improvement on the ones we were getting for the 5 or so years previous, which were tedious and clunky, as it felt like they were trying to sort out their flawed match engine.

Not sure I'll bother with this one, though. Purely because I hardly get a chance to play it, these days.

Edited by ColinBollocks
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I usually pick this up in the week before Xmas when the price drops to like £22-£25 quid and then gets me through Xmas/Jan Blues. Also HMV usually also throw in a free documentary thing about it every year (its the same one though).

There is much more to do with the newer versions but you can still delegate and assign certain tasks to your backroom team. Matchday modes vary from the new engines, text only or my personal fav being the 2D/2D classic view. 

As always with FM stick with it a few weeks to get used to the settings/game engine. I haven't read much on the new one but will most likely pick it up anyway.

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I committed. Got a steam key for £27 the other day and downloaded the Beta last night. According to the build your profile, this is me! Will have to try it again in natural light as I appear to be grey.

image.png.5cf10ef939ef1af7d6aa9e1d9fcd302a.png

I've started as Parma given they are back in Serie A. When Gervinho is your best player, I think you know it's going to be a tough season. The really tough aspect though is that they have about 500 players on loan, including my other two best players so at the end of the current season, I am absolutely fucked.

In a classic CM/FM move, I've started making some lists of decent larkers (actual lists, on paper, thank you).

 

Top GK:
Timo Horn (Koln)

"Wonderkids":

Jean-Manuel Mbom (Werder)
Dejan Jovelic (Red Star)
Antonio Marin (Dinamo)
Sandro Tonali (Brescia)
Joao Felix (Benfica)
Fiete Arp (Hamburg)

Josip Brekalo (Wolfsburg)
Paulinho (Bayer)

Free Agents:
Assane Gnoukouri
Gianluca Gaudino
Diego Poyet
Osman Hadzikic
Daniel Ndi
Robert
Naser Aliji
Rafidine Abdullah
Aaron Olanare

 

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You look like Violet from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory with that skin tone.

How long does it take to get through a normal week, and a pre-season week? I reckon I used to spend about a week going through pre-season, and about 2 hours flying through the actual season.

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